How to write like Edgar Allan Poe

A modern reader will not be surprised by a detective or fantastic story, as the market is overcrowded with such works. We are used to treating characters like Hercule Poirot as literary figures that existed for centuries, and we take the writers’ attempts to predict the future of mankind as a matter of course.

It’s strange to think that 200 years ago there was no place for a secret in poetry, romantic short stories, and philosophical treatises. There was not until a truly great writer appeared, and like any genius who is ahead of his age was deeply unhappy. Yeah, I am talking about Edgar Allan Poe, whose writing skills are so accomplished that people read his books until now. Poe is like Steve jobs of our time only without computer science degree but with revolutionary ideas.

To write like this genius not so easy as you might think. But you can try using some of these 5 tips.

Keep it short

If you want to write a really memorable story, it should be challenging and action-packed. But not too long, actually. A reader likes an exciting starting point, compelling body, and an unexpected ending. Poe argues against works that lack «unity of impression.» He claims «if any literary work is too long to be read at one sitting, we must be content to dispense with the immensely important effect derivable from unity of impression.» Have you ever read Allan Poe’s narratives? «The Masque of the red death,» «The gold bug» or «The fall of the house of Usher»? Are they long length? Not really. So if your work is more like «Anna Karenina» by Leo Tolstoy, think twice before publishing it.

Know the ending of your story, before you start writing

Poe insists on knowing the moment of truth before a prologue. The author should always keep in mind how his or her piece of work ends as Poe says “nothing is more clear than that every plot, worth the name, must be elaborated to its dénouement before anything be attempted with the pen.” Knowing the tail-end gives you an advantage: you can better figure out the whole plot as you build it on a postlude.

The tone of the work

Every outstanding writer has its own style and tone of the work is just exactly what makes it. Whether you are a romantic or a modernist, your writing needs an atmosphere. However, if you need some academic support with your home tasks, there is always an option to pay to get essay written.

Allan Poe chose melancholy, anxiety, loneliness, disappointment, decay and death. Not a lucent one but people still fancy it. To be more like this genius you need to create a suspense atmosphere. Add a first-person narrator whose mental state will be under the question so a reader can’t trust him. And something you should definitely reckon is our senses. To make a vivid picture engage a detailed description like Poe used in «The tell-tale heart.» One of the descriptions from this story is about a way the narrator sneaking into the room in the middle of the night for 8 days in a row. Isn’t it anxiously?

The desired effect

A writer should decide beforehand the way of the impression she or he wants to leave on the reader. Having this in mind gives you an opportunity to write more clearly and well-disposed. Add some literary devices to achieve wanted effect.

Choose a setting

Frankly speaking, one of the most important things for the Poe followers. You have a thought you want to deliver to the reader but how to do it properly? Of course, the first thing you do – make it logical. You give your characters certain trades and put in them direct cogitations. The idea is becoming alive. But to be more specific and accomplish it needs a place. Choose a location which suits the best for a conversation, dwelling or some actions. As Poe used in Raven.


So if you make an effort to become as marvelous as Edgar Allan Poe, be sure it is the first step to your writer’s success. To write more like a big genius read his full work «The philosophy of composition.» But only your own creative style and sense of writing create lead to recognition.

Written by CelebMix